Stephanie Jagl-Posch

riding and other stuff.


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Contests – A walk on a thin line between fun and frustration.

i had big plans for this season. i wanted to work my way up in the Austrian Freeride Ranking. i wished to show my best riding in the contests of the season and hoped for great moments. i aimed to become a better rider and collect lots of experience. i signed up for more contests than in the last two years to be able to accomplish these dreams.

so how is the season coming along so far? well, it’s not looking too promising, honestly.
i have competed in four contests up until now, the FWQ* Hochkönig (replacement for the cancelled contest due to fog on the Hochkar – read my article on powderguide.com about that: http://www.powderguide.com/magazin/events/fwt/artikel/1-fwq-open-faces-hochkar-musste-leider-abgesagt-werden.html), the FWQ** Kappl (article on PG), the Pitztal Wildface (a race on time, counting as FWQ**) and the FWQ*** Silvretta Montafon.

while i had the chance to get to know other riders and new resorts, i wasn’t really successful in any of the contests. granted, i got better results pointwise than in the contests before this season, but i never made it into the top half of the results.
it’s hard to acknowledge these results as a sign of progression, so i started to get a little frustrated.

adding to the negative feelings were the bad conditions we face this winter in Austria. they aren’t so bad you can’t get in some great days in the mountains, in fact, i’ve had a wonderful vacation in January, a great powder day in Zauchensee with newly found friends Claudia Klobasa and Michael Holzmeier, a wonderful splitboard touring day on the Göller in Lower Austria, as well as our annual descent from the Kitzsteinhorn to Niedernsill, but it’s just not good enough for me to be able to have funny snow days in between contests. as you may know, i work as a Web Developer in Vienna, which means that i can’t simply hike up a mountain before or after work without being completely knackered. most weekends were contest weekends.

göller, eisgrube. sunday funday! #splitboarding #pieps @julboeyewear @powderguide

Ein von steeephiii (@steeephiii) gepostetes Foto am 15. Feb 2015 um 5:54 Uhr

i tried to do my best, working out as much as possible and eating healthily, but due to all the travelling i have to do i hardly find time for recreational activities like for example my usual friday after work run in nature, which often helps me recharge my batteries.
i’m not complaining, because this is what i chose for myself to do, but it was simply a bit of an unlucky situation i was in.

to top it off, i’m having more colds this winter than i had in probably the last five winters together. i wasn’t feeling well in 2 out of 3 contests. how am i gonna show my best when i’m not feeling my best?

 

thankfully, the pages started to turn a little before the last contest, the FWQ*** Silvretta Montafon.
first off, i seeked advice from more experienced riders (thanks for your input, Manu!) and noticed that i had put too much pressure on myself and that i was eliminating the fun i usually have snowboarding this way.
secondly, i was in a good mood during the contest and i was very proud of myself that i managed the hike (really, the last part of it was more of a climb) to the start gate. it was also my first 3-star competition ever and i was happy that i had made it onto the starting list. i had a good time and enjoyed chatting with people, especially Caroline Mølgaard Onarheim (check out the blog she and her friend Mikaela Hollsten run!), who’s doing a winter season at the Arlberg.

 

i still have 2 contests ahead of me, the FWQ** Big Mountain Goldeck and the FWQ*** X-Over Kitzsteinhorn.
i have no idea how the rest of the contest season will unfold for me, but i’ll keep on trying my best. the contest season will be over at the end of march, and i hope that we can score some nice days touring and freeriding out in the wild until the snow fades away.

 

some pics from the contests so far:

FWQ* Hochkoenig 2015
starting my run at Hochkönig

FWQ* Hochkoenig 2015
chatting with Holzi after our runs

FWQ* Hochkoenig 2015
somehow my head looks funny in this pic!

FWQ* Hochkoenig 2015
highfivin Janine Quaas

FWQ* Hochkoenig 2015
SB Women Podium Hochkönig

FWQ* Hochkoenig 2015
SB Women Podium Hochkönig

FWQ** Kappl Contestface
the Contest Face in Kappl

FWQ** Kappl
waiting in Kappl and dreaming about a hot sauna

FWQ** Kappl - Roman
Roman throwing down in Kappl

Pitztal Wildface Face Check - Hike to Mittagskogel
hiking up to the Mittagskogel for the face check at the Pitztal Wildface

Pitztal Wildface Face Check Crew
Pitztal Wildface face check Mittagskogel – we have survived ;)

FWQ*** Silvretta Montafon
FWQ*** Silvretta Montafon – the climb up to the start
pic by skyhot


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Hello Julbo Eyewear!

a short time ago, i got offered a sponsorship by Julbo, a company founded by Jules Baud in france more than 125 years ago, that manufactures glasses, sunglasses, goggles and helmets. they have heroes in their team like skier Glen Plake or climber Ines Papert. of course i was happy about this offer and agreed.
on the second of january, just before we headed to Großarl, i received a package from Julbo, containing 2 goggles (Orbiter and Eclipse), 1 pair of sunglasses (Suspect) and 1 helmet (Dune).

Julbo Glasses & Helmet
glasses from top to bottom: Julbo Eclipse, Julbo Suspect, Julbo Orbiter. Julbo Dune helmet.

 

i’m going to give a short feedback on the products, in case you’re interested in getting new equipment.
i have tested them on the slopes, as well as when freeriding and on splitboard tour.

the goggles both sit very comfortably, also perfectly in combination with the helmet, offering a rather wide view. both glasses adjust to the lightness automatically. the Zebra Light glasses are suited for a weather range of partly sunny to overcast or foggy. the Zebra glasses are good on days where the weather lies between sunshine and slightly overcast conditions.
the visibility is very clear. i have so far never had glasses that adjust to the lightness and i was positively surprised at how well the adjustment works! no changing of glasses anymore, that’s really nice!
the goggles are permanently ventilated, which is an important feature in my book.

the helmet is rather lightweight, offering a cozy fit. the size can be finetuned by the turn of a wheel on the back of the helmet – i love that! no matter if i’m wearing a skull cap or nothing underneath, i can adjust the helmet to a tight fit in the matter of a second.

the sunglasses are as light as a feather. they feel very durable. we will see, how they hold up over time, but i’m positive.
they sit snugly, which means they don’t shake around when moving, but still they don’t press into the temples of my face. this is important, because when i go on a splitboard tour and the weather is good, i usually will be wearing the sunglasses for 2 to 3 hours. if the sunglasses start to hurt, you have to wear them over a headband or beanie to avoid pain. this causes a looser fit and more movement of the sunglasses, which is not very desireable.

to sum it up, i’m very satisfied with the products i received and will happily use them whenever i go ride.
thanks Julbo for your trust and support!
-> visit the Julbo website


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Winter Inauguration 2015.

to celebrate the newborn winter season 2014/2015, Roman and I went on a 9 day pow searching mission in Austria from friday, the 2nd january 2015 on.
our powder in the east (PIE) buddy G. came over and we hit the road to Salzburg together.
we met up with a group of PIE members in Großarl in the evening and made plans for the next day.

saturday morning, we started our first tour and hiked up to the Penkkopf, one of the most visited mountaintops in the Großarl region. Roman and I had already been up there before, so we knew that this tour was perfect as a starter. first you start out pretty mellow with a long hike along a shallow path through a dreamy winter wonderland, then the track steepens for the last hour or so until you reach the flat peak. from there, you have a great view all around, from Großarl to Kleinarl, which lies on the other side of the mountain.
after a short break on the mountaintop, we had a fun ride down. the snow conditions were pretty good, we had enough snow to ride without the risk of hitting rocks or trees situated underneath the snow and even found some entertaining pillows and small jumps.

View from the Penkkopf
view from the summit of Penkkopf.

on sunday, the weather had gone bad, with limited view, snowfall and lots of wind. we decided to play it safe and ride the slopes of Großarl.
as we all hadn’t had the chance to ride a lot prior to this trip, it was a great opportunity to get used to riding again. luckily, after several years of snowboarding, it doesn’t take long to get the hang of it again. i have to say, i really noticed how much my riding has improved during the last winter season. i’m very thankful for that. seems like the bad conditions were useful after all!

we played around, explored the fresh snow next to the slopes and had a surprisingly awesome day.

on monday, it was time to say goodbye to the PIE group and Großarl. Roman and I hopped into the car and headed over to Obertauern, where we were able to stay at Hotel Leitner (nice place directly at the slopes, with breakfast buffet and sauna – check it out if you seek accommodation in Obertauern!).
we met up with F., a friend of G., and plowed through the fresh snow next to the slopes. the view was still limited, so we stuck to humble tree runs but still had a great time.

Sunrise in Obertauern
good morning, Obertauern!

tuesday was the first day with sunny weather and fresh pow, as well as a national holiday, which meant that lots of people came to the resort and ventured into the backcountry. we decided to stay on the safe side (after all, we still had an avalanche risk of 3 out of 5) and first warmed up next to the slopes. we hit some drops, did some turns and after about an hour, decided to explore some of the safer routes out of bounds.
i have to say, i’m not one who chases first lines, i’m more of a safety lover. i’d rather be safe and maybe ride a slope where there’s already some tracks inside, than go out of my way to be the first to ride somewhere.
there will be times when the conditions will be just right anyways and then i will be able to truly enjoy drawing first lines.
still, we had no problem finding paths to ride that were enjoyable, occasionally scoring face shots as well as dropping and jumping around.

on wednesday we pulled out our touring gear and went on a hike to the Große Kesselspitze, which lies next to the resort of Obertauern, but can’t be accessed by the lifts.
the weather felt like spring (oh no, not again, just like last winter! ;)) as we walked through a lovely forest and then spitzkehred our way up to the top. the last few meters to the summit have to be climbed, so we left our equipment at the ski depot to check out the view on this sunny day.
we met a few other ski touring folks and talked to them about the possible descent on the south facing slope. originally, we had planned to ride down the ascent route as a safety measure, but since the snow seemed to be good, we decided to follow the tracks of the other guys.
it was a great idea and a memorable descent!

On top of the Große Kesselspitze
Roman checking the view on the summit of the Große Kesselspitze.

The rocky path up to the Summit of Große Kesselspitze
a look back to the rocky path up to the Summit.

A look back on the descent of Große Kesselspitze
this was our lovely way down!

 

thursday was our planned travel and chill day. Roman wanted to try out a new binding, so we went to the Blue Tomato test center in Obertauern, where he received a now! binding to test.
as we stood around in the shop, M., one of the shop dudes, asked if we were interested in giving him company for a short freeride intermezzo. we shortly discussed if this sounded like a good idea or not (after all, knees were sore and a freeride camp was coming up) but then made up our minds and told M. that we were going to join him.
in the mean time, his shred buddy B. had arrived and we headed up to the chair lift together.
after two warm up runs, we started to hike towards the Seekarspitze. after about 30 minutes, we reached our destination and each of us found an individual spot to drop in. my route was steep at the top and i couldn’t clearly see if there were rocks beneath me, so i decided to head to the left after dropping in, to ride around that overhanging part. snow was good and we all had a good time cruising down.
afterwards, we said goodbye and headed back to the shop, where Roman finally bought the bindings.

shortly after his purchase, we drove to Bad Mitterndorf and checked into our apartment. the rest of the day was spent relaxing, in the evening we visited Steph from Die Bergstation for a chat and a Zirbenschnaps.

I ho Hoamweh noch BA
Mitterndorf, here we come!

friday morning meant the start of yet another freeride day, only this time not on our own but with a group of lovely, funny people, most of them already familiar faces, as we were part of the motherland anniversary camp.
happy campers cruised and hiked, and faster than we could point out shit, the day was over.
everybody seemed sore but satisfied.

Mitterndorf Sunset.
the sun setting like crazy over Bad Mitterndorf.

during the night, it started to pour down like crazy. on saturday, a lot of the snow in town had melted or been washed away. also, it was very stormy, so much that all the lifts were closed.
Steph and Markus, our guides, let us decide if we wanted to go ride the slopes of Riesneralm or do an avy training.
we all preferred to work on our avalanche rescue skills, and so we went up to the Schönialm by car, where we first got served hot drinks by the friendly Schönialm staff, although it was their day off – thanks again!
the guide team explained the proper process when solving an avalanche accident and then we went outside to work on our practical skills. we split up in two groups, got tips on our shoveling technique and then hid a few avalanche transceivers and backpacks for the other group to search.
our guides played eye witnesses who had just seen a group of people go down with an avalanche. and they did it very well – Steph pretended to be totally devastated and in panic, we hardly were able to get out any info from him and even needed to do a body check to find out if he was carrying an avalanche transceiver, which might interfere with our search.
as our group consisted of 4 people with 3 of us knowing each other pretty well, our rescue went fine and we finished solving the problem of multiple buried transceivers and probing for a backpack rather quickly. statistically, everyone could have survived, as we were finished in about 12 minutes, if i remember that correctly.
the result felt really good and i am sure that we were able to better our skills.
hopefully, we will never need to use our knowledge, but it’s good to feel prepared and able to help.

on sunday, we faced yet another slush day and roman and i decided to skip riding and go home instead.
we had had a great week of riding and felt no need in fighting with wet, heavy snow. our thighs agreed ;)

 

Going Home sad.
going home – happy because of the great days we had, sad that the weather wasn’t on our side for the last day.

 

tomorrow it’s time for the first FWQ contest of the season at the Hochkar in Lower Austria, wish me luck!


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Splitboard Article in Volume Magazine

a short time ago, Roman and myself were asked to write an article for an austrian music magazine called Volume for their Freeride Special on the topic of Splitboarding. we sat down, thought about it, started to write, erased parts again but finally finished the piece and called it “Split it – Die Geschichte des Splitboards und wofür es gut ist”.

Volume Magazin

read it online here:
-> http://www.volume.at/magazin/kategorie-uebersicht/detailansicht/m05/4856/

 

thanks to Stephan from Die Bergstation for inviting us to be part of this Freeride Special!


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kicking off the winter season

IMG_8174

on saturday, roman and me packed our bags and headed west, as roman had a gig at the winter opening in wagrain. when we arrived there, all the slopes were still green. a few hours later, a soft but constant snowfall set in, which continued over the weekend.

roman mixed the opening act (lemo, go check them out) and we all enjoyed a nice evening together.
romanmischt

as we had already checked the weather forecast and webcams of the region beforehand, we were prepared to travel further west on sunday to find some freshies.

after breakfast, we jumped into the car and off we went to tyrol. at first we were a bit undecisive about where to go, our options were hintertux, stubai or sölden. in the end, we decided to go to the stubai glacier.
we were expecting to do warm up runs on the slopes, with nearly no snow offpiste.
luckily, we were wrong.
when we arrived, we immediately bought tickets and took the gondola upwards.
we were welcomed by enough snow to do our first turns of the season.
it still snowed lightly, with the most perfect snowflakes i have ever seen.
schneeflocke

in the evening, it was time for pizza and sauna.

 

on monday, enough snow had accumulated to ride offpiste without collecting coreshots. i lost track of the number of runs we did, but it was a whole lot.
we rode until our legs were properly done and the lifts closed.

tuesday came around the corner and we dragged our exhausted bodies onto the glacier once more.
at first, the weather seemed to turn out a little better than during the last days, providing us with better vision, but in the afternoon, it was time for the total whiteout.
i may need to get a better goggle glass ;)

we quit at 3pm, gave our tickets back (boohoo :/) and then hit the motorway.

gletscher

 

 

next up – splitboard touring in lower austria on the weekend. hopefully.

in january it’s time for the motherland anniversary camp and after that, the contest season will be in full swing.
i’m looking forward to the competitions, meeting fellow contestants again, improving my riding and collecting points.
also a highlight this winter – the kripp girls camp with melissa presslaber.

i’m ready!

ssscard

let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!


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PIEPS Freeride Team Meeting 2014

PIEPS Freeride Team Meeting Stubai

the PIEPS Freeride Team came together on the 31st of october for the annual meeting on Stubai Glacier in best weather conditions – sunshine and comfortable temperatures greeted all athletes as well as Gregor Krenn and Stephan Skrobar, representing PIEPS.

Gregor Krenn showed off product news, like the software updates for the PIEPS DSP Pro and PIEPS DSP Sport, as well as the final version of the PIEPS Jetforce Airbag Backpack.

 

The biggest changes in the software include:

PIEPS DSP Pro and PIEPS DSP Sport:

• Check Mode – after turning the device on to send mode, you have the possibility to enter the transceiver Check Mode, which will enable you to easily check the devices of your group for functionality and if the frequencies are in the normed range.

PIEPS DSP Pro only:

Auto-Revert Search-to-Send – when you are in search mode and don’t move for 30 seconds, the device will start a visual countdown accompanied by an audio signal. after another 30 seconds, the switch back to send mode will occur, and a continuos audio signal will let the user know that their device is now back in send mode. although it is recommended to keep this function disabled and carry a PIEPS Backup instead, as this is the safest setup in case of a follow-up avalanche (the device might get ripped out of your hands in this case), it is still an improvement in safety.

 

Always keep your software up to date! To find out your current software version, just switch on your device and the software version number will be shown on screen.
All PIEPS Dealers are able to update the software version of your device, click here to find the one nearest to you!

 

PIEPS Freeride Team Meeting Stubai, Jetforce Demo

PIEPS Jetforce Demo

The PIEPS Jetforce is now ready for sale and has already won 2 important industry awards – the Fast Forward Award 2014 and the ISPO Award Gold 2014.
It will come in 2 different versions, the Tour Pro with 34 liters and the Tour Rider holding 24 liters.

The advantages of a PIEPS Jetforce over other systems are:

• continuos inflation of the Airbags during 3 minutes, ensuring an inflated Airbag even in the case of small tears in the material. after this period of time the Airbag will be automatically deflated, leaving a big hollow space filled with air in the snow.

• after an inflation, the Airbag can easily be repacked and is immediately ready for another deploy.

• the PIEPS Jetforce can be taken abord all planes, no permission is required.

• the battery of the PIEPS Jetforce can be reloaded easily at home and lasts at least for 4 deploys.

 

We also refreshed our avalanche rescue skills, working in groups on the different phases of searching for a buried avalanche transceiver.
Afterwards, we indulged in coffee, tea and cakes & ended our day chatting away in the sunshine.

It was a great day, thanks to PIEPS for having us!

 

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i’d rather surf – in fuerteventura.

on the 4th of september, we had an early start into the day at 3am. while it was dark, we drove to the airport to catch our flights, first to madrid and then to fuerteventura. the target of our trip was corralejo, a small town in the north of the island, well-known as a place for vacations in a never ending summer. the temperatures hardly ever drop below 20 degrees and it only rains on about 20 days a year. this is also the reason why there’s only a minimal amount of plantation, making a big part of the island look like the sahara or how one would imagine the surface of the moon.

i had wanted to go to fuerteventura even before i started surfing, so when i got the invitation to come visit the planet surf camp on the island, i didn’t need to think about it for long. for sure i was going!
and there we were, rolling our hand luggage towards the gate at the airport. we both had managed to fit a long, thick wetsuit as well as booties and the most necessary clothing into small suitcases, so we were able to save a bit of money for the flight.
after two flights, we safely arrived at the airport in fuerteventura and caught the bus number 3 to puerto del rosario. there, we changed buses at the estacion del guaguas (terminal autobus station) and went to corralejo with bus number 6.
we didn’t know the right station to get off the bus, so we had to walk about one kilometer to the surfcamp, but arrived happily in the end.

Foto 1

a part of the outdoor area at the surf house.

at the surfcamp, we were greeted by Nina, one of the teamers at that time. she gave us all the info we needed about the camp and our room.
next, we went to check out the town and get something to eat and then hung out at the house for the rest of the day.

Foto 5

time to load up all the boards onto the vans!

on the next day, we had our first surf session at el cotillo, which is a long beach break. we joined the beginner group, so surf instructor olly could check our surf level. we luckily made it into the intermediate course for the next week, horray!

Foto 1aFoto 2a
surfing at el cotillo.

we spent the weekend surfing in el cotillo on our own. planet surf allows you to borrow surfboards which are not used by courses on the current day for free, which is a good opportunity to get more sessions in, especially on the weekends where the surf instructors have their well-deserved days off.

Foto 4

live the search ;)

during the next week, we had a surf session each day with instructor marco from italy and were able to check out different spots. on our last day, the waves were not good during our session in the morning, so olly thankfully squeezed us into another surf session in the afternoon so we could catch some waves before leaving.
besides surfing, we also went on a lot of walks into the town and we even hiked up the big volcano behind corralejo once.

vulkan

hiking to the top of the volcano.

if you want to go to fuerteventura to surf, i have some recommendations for you:

  • find out at home what bus lines you might need to reach your desired spots. there are no line numbers to be found at the bus stations.
  • you are allowed to put surfboards into the baggage compartment of the buses, just make sure they don’t get damaged. if you give the bus driver a friendly wave after taking the surfboards out, he might even greet you goodbye with a honk. don’t be sad, only the little town train gets two honks! ;)
  • get your hands on a surf spot map. it should be available at the surf shops in town and includes info about the best conditions to ride at each spot as well as a tide timetable.
  • if you want to rent a car for surfing in corralejo, go to autos hernandez. the other companies don’t rent to surfers. the best idea might be to check where you can rent a car for surfing before starting your trip and maybe rent a car at the airport already.
  • to get to el cotillo: if you go by car, you can keep driving until you reach the last part of the beach with a long, steep stairset leading down from the parking lot.
  • if you go by bus (number 8 from the roundabout on the main street of corralejo), you can get off the bus at the first station directly after entering the town. it’s a 25 minute walk from there to the beach.
  • in case you want to spend a day just hanging out at the beach, you can walk to flag beach from corralejo, it will take you about half an hour and the sand beach there is a lot nicer than the rocky town beach. you will be able to see this beach when going to corralejo from the airport, it is next to the two big hotel buildings standing on their own shortly before corralejo.

some tips for vegans:

  • it might be good to know that there are hardly any savoury plant-based spreads available in corralejo. the spar in the big shopping center on the main street carries hummus, in hiperdinos you can get peanut butter chocolate spread and one vegan margarine. there’s a big variety of fruits and veggies available and some exotic fruits are even grown locally on the canaries like bananas and mangos. you should absolutely try those!
  • we found plenty of plant based milks in the supermarkets, even vegan yoghurt.
  • the best places to eat out were single fin (creative burgers, run by two friends from italy, with surfmovies being played on a screen outside the bar) and big wave (an italian restaurant with a huge variety of vegan toppings and nice waiters).
  • aside from single fin and big wave, you might be able to get vegan options at the mexican restaurant as well as the indian restaurants.

 

-> http://www.planetsurfcamps.com/

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